Statement | Overtime

News from EPI Weakening the overtime rule would hurt low-wage and middle-class workers

Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta announced at a hearing today that the Department of Labor will open a request for information regarding the updated overtime rule—in an apparent attempt to potentially weaken the much-needed updates to the rule.

American workers won a critical victory when DOL updated the overtime rule. If you really are an executive, you should be paid an executive salary, not $23,660—less than the poverty level for a family of four. Until updated by the Obama administration, the rule resulted in millions of employees working long hours without extra pay. The updated rule means 4 million more working people are entitled to overtime pay and another 9 million have their right to overtime pay strengthened and clarified. In 2017 alone, workers should earn $1.2 billion in extra pay.

Since November, DOL’s implementation and enforcement of this rule has been stalled due to legal challenges. Now, by calling for a Request for Information, the Trump administration has made it clear that they are trying to weaken or kill the rule. The Labor Department does not need more information about the rule. DOL carefully studied the badly outdated rule for more than two years. Myriad studies were submitted during the comment period, along with hundreds of thousands of comments. And the department conducted an exhaustive cost-benefit analysis. The Labor Department does not need more information about overtime pay, they need to support and defend a rule that provides working people with higher wages, more free time, or both.

See related work on Perkins Project | Overtime

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